Author Topic: Reserved occupation WW2  (Read 712 times)

Offline LADY OF THE ENGLISH

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #9 on: Tuesday 05 February 19 21:52 GMT (UK) »
Hi I know my dad was in a reserved occupation, he was a coal miner in Yorkshire, coal was needed for the war effort to help in the production iron steel etc, for the other industries we had at the time,,,,

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Offline Malcolm33

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #10 on: Tuesday 05 February 19 22:09 GMT (UK) »
Hi I know my dad was in a reserved occupation, he was a coal miner in Yorkshire, coal was needed for the war effort to help in the production iron steel etc, for the other industries we had at the time,,,,

    Was he perhaps a 'Bevin Boy'?     Bevin Boys were conscripted by lot.    I think I would rather have gone to the front which was at times much safer than we got it at home.   I did get two weeks off school when it was hit with 2 bombs during one raid.    Then came the buzz bombs and a rocket which fell a mile away hitting a cemetery gates, and the blast cracked one of our windows.
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Online bykerlads

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #11 on: Tuesday 05 February 19 22:20 GMT (UK) »
Two coincidences here!!
Malcolm, you have indirectly touched on our man's origins! He came from a long line of Byker keelers/watermen- though by the end of the 1800's the family no longer plied that trade.
Redroger has, in mentioning Harold Wilson who was born in Huddersfield, mentioned the town where our man was living by 1936. He was born in Byker and came to Hudds as a professional football player. A brief career, by 1939 he was an engineering worker.

Offline Top-of-the-hill

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #12 on: Tuesday 05 February 19 22:51 GMT (UK) »
  My uncle was 18 in 1939, an apprentice electrician in the Kent coalfield. He always said he volunteered immediately so he didn't get trapped at the pit!
Pay, Kent
Codham/Coltham, Kent
Kent, Felton, Essex
Staples, Wiltshire

Offline Rena

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #13 on: Wednesday 06 February 19 03:31 GMT (UK) »
Of our near neighbours, only one served in HM Forces and he was a pilot. The rest were teachers, a council clerk, a policeman.  My father-in-law, born in Byker, was a train driver in Hull Docks and a Civil Defence fire warden; an uncle was the foreman joiner at the Co-Op; my father (served in the Home Guard) and his four brothers were all engineers with three of them building earth moving equipment for the same company.  That company also trained women to use their machines.  The machines and their female operators were needed to help farmers feed the nation by clearing and draining every part of the farms in order to increase production.  Here's a photo of two land army girls on a Devon farm with a Priestman's excavator.
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Offline Gillg

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #14 on: Wednesday 06 February 19 09:08 GMT (UK) »
My father-in-law was in a reserved occupation in WW2, as he was a plumber and builder, but my father, a businessman, was called up in 1942 at the age of 41 and was sent to Scapa Flow to look after the Navy there. My mother was left to run the business and look after two very small children.  I believe 41 was the oldest men could be called up, so he was unlucky there, but the older men in this case were not sent to the fighting front. 
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Online bykerlads

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #15 on: Wednesday 06 February 19 10:52 GMT (UK) »
The whole system for calling up men seems to have been a bit unclear and inconsistent.
I do wonder how much resentment it caused amongst people when they saw, for example, a 30 year-old with 3 kids called up to fight when his neighbour a unmarried strong 20 year old stayed at home in relative safety.
I do recall that my dad always emphasised the fact that he volunteered the day he was old enough and had no respect those those who "piked about at home, waiting to be called up". He hinted that his volunteering remained on his record and CV and accounted for his being promoted and making great progress in his job when he returned.
Particular criticism was directed locally at the son of a market gardener who "fiddled about in greenhouses whilst his mates went to die for their country"

Online Regorian

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #16 on: Wednesday 06 February 19 11:23 GMT (UK) »
My father was 31 in 1939. He formulated camo. colours for RAF aircraft and had two patents in 1942 connected with the War effort. He did try to volunteer for the RAF in 1940, but was turned down flat. He was involved in cocooning of deck cargoes sent to Murmansk. It was mooted he go on a convoy, but that was squashed too.   
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Online melba_schmelba

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Re: Reserved occupation WW2
« Reply #17 on: Wednesday 06 February 19 11:26 GMT (UK) »
The whole system for calling up men seems to have been a bit unclear and inconsistent.
I do wonder how much resentment it caused amongst people when they saw, for example, a 30 year-old with 3 kids called up to fight when his neighbour a unmarried strong 20 year old stayed at home in relative safety.
I do recall that my dad always emphasised the fact that he volunteered the day he was old enough and had no respect those those who "piked about at home, waiting to be called up". He hinted that his volunteering remained on his record and CV and accounted for his being promoted and making great progress in his job when he returned.
Particular criticism was directed locally at the son of a market gardener who "fiddled about in greenhouses whilst his mates went to die for their country"
For the agricultural jobs, most of the ages for reserve were  25, some were 30, such as horse trainer/stud man, ditcher/hedger, hay cutter/straw binder. For other occupations, there were lower 21 and 23 ages which qualified, I presume for the jobs they thought women less able of doing.